TikTok named a threat to YouTube as it makes 2020 it’s year

TikTok was already rocketing up app charts around the world and now with the world on lockdown it’s making more connections than ever.

YouTube are the long-standing video giants and it’s long been thought that that’s just how it will be online. But, whilst TikTok represents a vastly smaller range of content than Alphabet’s big daddy of video, some are tipping TikTok’s booming popularity to be an eventual threat to YouTube’s dominance.

In a report last week, it was revealed that kids in the US, UK, and Spain are watching almost as much content on TikTok as they are YouTube – and that’s a LOT of watching. The Qustodia study showed on average US kids are watching 86 minutes of YouTube per day – and only 4 minutes less on TikTok.

Despite YouTube’s increasing importance on advertisers over the years, sometimes at the behest of creators, TikTok’s parent Bytedance generated more ad revenue in 2019. Is it a fair competition though? Perhaps not.

TikTok’s focus is on short form videos with a social aspect. You’re not going to find 20 minute educational videos or hours long Ted Talks on TikTok. So whilst the two face off in the online world of video, unless something dramatically changes with either of their platforms I don’t see why they can’t happily co-exist.

That’s not stopping some commentators saying that Bytedance’s incredibly popular app is a threat to YouTube and their video dominance. Writing for Tech Crunch, Sarah Perez notes that a trend in declining YouTube views amongst younger generations – even with much more time at home now to watch YouTube – could be a result of more time spent on TikTok, in spite of the varying ranges of content.

TikTok hit 2 billion downloads earlier this year and has only been getting increasingly popular since. It’s been a perfect combination of growing trends from last year and much more free time in people’s hands in making TikTok truly huge this year. They gained over 5 million users in just the US in March alone.

We will no doubt be seeing much more success from them, and perhaps competition between them and YouTube if their popularity encroaches on YouTube usage.

Head of Social Media and Marketing, RouteNote

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